The Father's Heart of Compassion
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Central Thought: God is throwing a party, but to enter in we need to put something down.
I. The heart of the Father is the heart of compassion.
II. Good news for those who need grace
III. Bad news for big brother
IV. What does it look like to have a new heart?
V. How does the story end?
1) Can you think of a time when you found saying, “I told you so” almost irresistible? Would you be willing to tell the story?
2) In the story of the prodigal son, who do you most relate with – the father, the younger son or the older son? Why?
3) When you see human need, what is your basic stance? Is it to hold that at arms length, or does your heart break for every need?
What is dangerous about living in a constant state of being broken? If you are very tender-hearted, how do you avoid compassion fatigue?
If you distance yourself from need, how do you avoid becoming too distant?
4) What do you suppose broke through to the prodigal son? Why did he come to his senses in that moment and not before?
5) What happens in your heart as you consider the father’s love running to meet the son? How does this picture of God change the way you relate to God?
6) Why doesn’t the older brother want to enter the party?
What feelings might be behind saying, “this son of yours,” rather than calling him his brother?
7) What does God need to break your heart about?
8) Whom do you need to go after to convey the Father’s love? Will you say a name?
What are you prepared to do about that?
Will you do that this week?